WALLA WALLA -- A "Mini Blizzard Celebration" has turned out to be a maxi-event for a Walla Walla family.
A video about the frozen confection produced by Ross and Jennifer Stremcha and starring their daughters, Alyssa, age 11, and Alexis, age 8, has been selected as one of 24 finalists in a national contest sponsored by Dairy Queen. Finalists were announced Wednesday.
The clip was picked out of the more than 350 entries submitted, said Dean Peters, Dairy Queen associate vice president of communications. Fans will have until May 18 to vote for their favorite video and the top six vote-getters will each win a new BMW Mini Cooper Countryman automobile.
"We just freaked out," Alyssa said Thursday about their reaction to finding their entry was a finalist. Since then, Jennifer Stremcha said, "it's been a whirlwind because we're trying to get in touch with people for them to vote."
Titled "A Mini Blizzard Celebration," the clip has Alyssa and Alexis singing and dancing their way through a series of good deeds in line with the contest rules that call for a video depicting contestants doing nice things for someone "that treats them in a big Mini Blizzard way."
Among their good deeds are the sisters cheerfully washing the family truck, mowing the lawn, baby sitting, doing housework for Jennifer's mom and even giving Sadie, the family dog, a bubble bath. In between, the girls deliver an enthusiastic song and dance to the tune of the video's title.
Although the clip's running time is only slightly more than two minutes, producing it was "a ton of work," Jennifer said. "It was probably four to five hours of filming time and 15 hours of editing time," she said.
Peters said the 24 finalists were chosen by a seven-member panel of judges that based its selections on creativity, originality, overall appeal and how well the video related the contest's theme. The winning videos will be posted on Dairy Queen's website as well as on Facebook.
Response to the contest exceeded their expectations. "We had a ton of really great entries," Peters said.
Andy Porter can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 526-8318.
How to vote
Page with contest entrants and opportunity to vote: ubne.ws/ifkEXT